Having options can go both ways. On one hand, there are countless games doing new and different things that may or may not be worth playing. But, on the other hand, it makes it a lot harder to stand out. The original Fallen Legion games stood out, mostly due to their similarities of games like Valkyrie Profile, along with telling the same story from different perspectives. It was fun, but there were some problems, which were hopefully addressed in Fallen Legion Revenants. With a new story, additional gimmicks, and more, does it build on the original, or is it a step back?
On paper, Fallen Legion Revenants has a pretty interesting story. Everything takes place on a Walkin Castle, a floating haven for the remaining members of the human race, with the world below being warped and altered by a plague. Through this adventure, you mostly play as Rowena, who wants to bring her son back to life, and Lucien, a politician who learned of great power, who team up in hopes of overthrowing the tyrant who rules over their land.
While the core is there, it’s actually a relatively slow burn. A lot of time will be spent wandering around Welkin Castle investigating, communicating, and working with those that reside there. During certain stages, there are sections where you need to interrogate and examine what is said to progress the story, as well as collect information to know what exactly is going on. This is also where things start to get rocky.
Those looking for a more robust story, one that is centered around more character interactions, lore, and finer points will likely love Fallen Legion Revenants. It is a well-written adventure, it just has a lot of stories to tell and won’t appeal to everyone. Thankfully, a lot of it can be ignored without much of a penalty. The full experience will require reading, determining the right paths to take, and achieve a greater understanding of what exactly is going on and the stakes, though it will always make sense if you limit yourself to the details. Where the story is a bit elaborate, the gameplay is relatively straightforward.
As mentioned above, there are sections where you need to interrogate people. These are often timed and come down to paying attention to the details. One character might say that they saw another character doing something, meaning you need to talk to them to progress. Likewise, there are different dialogue choices and events, with the outcomes ultimately shaping the outcome of your adventure. This is an interesting twist, though it can be frustrating when you miss the cue or detail that is needed to advance the story.
Outside of those segments are combat sections. Rowena and up to three exemplars go on adventures killing monsters. Despite being a dynamic turn-based RPG, there is a strong emphasis put on knowing what to do.
The easiest way to win a fight is to master your timing. If I block at the right moment or use the right attacks, enemies are rarely a struggle. In fact, it’s shocking the difference between blindly attacking or waiting for an enemy to attack, parry, and then punish its defenseless body. This is a huge positive, as you’re motivated to play the way Fallen Legion Revenants wants, though it isn’t impossible to figure out your own way of doing things.
Your exemplars fall in a similar category. There are distinct advantages and disadvantages to each choice. Sometimes you’ll want range, other times a strong defense and you can decide how important these details are. Similar to the timing of your attacks, there are benefits to knowing when you want Solomon to lead or have Orion in the back, giving the rather simplistic gameplay experience a fair amount of depth. There are also charged moves, special attacks, a number of times you can attack, and more to make the most of each situation. Be it chipping damage from the back or using someone to finish off a guard so you can lay into them.
Outside of combat, there is also some light upgrading. Nothing too over the top, a lot of it changing based on the items you get at the end of stages and through progression. This is enough to bring out the RPG elements, though not enough to overwhelm anyone looking to just enjoy the story.
Another stand out element to Fallen Legion Revenants is art. Characters, locations, and the world itself look lovely, with some real stand-out elements. Burgundy, one of the first characters you recruit, is a fantastic example of that. She shoots potions from a gun and is filled with delightful details like kicking potions at enemies to simply reloading. But, on the flip side, the animation and world can sometimes feel a bit stiff. The same fluid animation and expressive details found in something like Skullgirls simply isn’t here. It doesn’t ruin the experience, though it does stand out.
Fallen Legion Revenants Review – Verdict
At its core, Fallen Legion Revenants is a good game. The ideas, story, and gameplay are all there, it just hinges on you being the type of a person it appeals to. For example, combat can be methodic and slow, though it rewards a tactical mind. The story is fascinating and has a lot to say, though it requires an interest in exploring the world to really get into it. As a result, there is a good chance you’ll like Fallen Legion Revenants if you’re into RPGs, but you need to fit one of the aforementioned molds to really love it.
[Editor’s Note: Fallen Legion Revenants was reviewed on PlayStation 5 and a copy was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]